Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

DE2: handheld fax and e-mail

FastFax is a small, lightweight fax and e-mail device capable of interfacing to cellular telephones. At the heart of the design is a reduced instruction set computing (RISC)-based processor which provides the speed, low power consumption and low cost required by the portable market. It is operated through on-screen menus allied to a limited number of buttons whose functions change to present options, in a manner similar to an automatic teller machine. This makes it extremely easy to use for non-computer literate professionals and allows simple multi-lingual support.

The paper handling and printing functions (rollers, stepper motors, printer heads, gearing, etc) have been replaced with a liquid crystal display screen for viewing and a printer port for producing hard copies. Without the document feed mechanism, users simply drag the unit across the page to scan the image, which is then stored before being sent. To achieve sufficient scan quality, fast processing is needed and the ARM7100 RISC-based core provides the necessary speed. With an application specific integrated circuit (ASIC) to provide support logic, this allowed very rapid development. Personal Computing Memory Card International Association (PCMCIA) slots are used as the most versatile way to interface to global system mobile (GSM) phones and public switched telephone network (PSTN) modems. The power supply was also designed so a single set of batteries provides 30 min of continuous scanning or 10 h of document viewing, and up to 30 d image storage in low power mode.

Reported by

OptionExist Ltd
Nixon Hall 1 Chapel Road Great Eversden
CB3 7HP Cambridge
United Kingdom
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